A few hours in London

I’d first come across Sheila Hicks a couple of years ago through The Textile Reader edited by Jessica Hemmings. I made a few notes here. It was with delight I found out she was having an exhibition of her work at The  Hayward Gallery so day’s trip to London was booked.


A walk over Golden Jubilee Bridge with St Paul’s in the background


A queue of London buses on Waterloo Bridge


I was disappointed to find this area was only open at the weekend but I was able to see the huge bales of acrylic fibres bound into pod shapes.



Detail of the large wired structure.




I was interested to see how these forms were hung – picture hooks.





Razor shells remind me of overgrown finger nails.

I came away feeling underwhelmed, not having been excited by any of the pieces; the site specific piece Sunset Pavilion Inhabited  couldn’t be accessed and brought to mind a recycling fabric depot where the bales of acrylic had been sorted into colours – waiting for shipment elsewhere.  I wanted the woven Minimes to reflect the colours of her travels to India, Mexico, Chile, Morocco but the muted shades were more reminiscent of colder climes. The Nomad Treasure Bales were colourful but the title at odds with their shape – these were the highlight of a disappointing exhibition.

An interview with Sheila Hicks at the gallery is here.

A walk along the embankment, passed the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament and across Lambert Bridge to Tate Britain.

I came across the works of Caroline Achaintre in a deserted gallery – a mixture of textiles and ceramics with a willow sculpture.


I enjoyed seeing the diversity of work from one artist.

I’d read a damming review of Christina Mackie’s filters and hadn’t realised it was at Tate Britain. Unlike that reviewer I was taken with the site specific installation.


It filled the space with colour and I was intrigued as to how the filters were suspended above the  pools of dye – huge cast iron weights were used as counter balances. The circular vats reflected the  cavernous hall –  a carefully considered piece.

Time for a cuppa in the gardens of the cafe then a stroll back to Victoria Coach Station for the coach home.

During my journey I reflected on my day and came to the conclusion that I’ve seen some exceptionally good Degree Shows and wondered why some people are accepted into the higher echelons of the art world with less exciting or thought provoking work.


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